Cannabis concentrates have become the hot new thing among cannabis users. As the name implies, concentrates are made from concentrated THC and CBD extracts from cannabis flowers. Because concentrates are made by separating the resin from the plant matter and concentrating the active ingredients, you can expect to find THC levels as high as 90% while regular bud may only get as potent as 20% THC.
Here, we’ll go over a guide to the different forms of concentrates, which vary based on how they’re made and which can look vastly different from the herb you might be used to. You’ll also get a peek into the various potencies.
If you have questions on the specific potency of any one concentrate, visit your local dispensary, like our shop here at The Green Ace and ask a budtender any questions you may have. Otherwise, we’ve got you covered with everything you need to know about concentrates right here:
The following are classic concentrates that marijuana users have enjoyed smoking for decades:
- Hashish – By far the most well-known concentrate, hash is made by separating the trichomes from the plant matter and pressing the resin into solid pieces. Originating in northern India and the Arabian peninsula, hash eventually spread around the worl. There’s proof of it being consumed as far back as the times of Elizabethan England. Smoking from hookahs and joints is the usual way to consume hash, but it can be eaten as well and be just as effective.
- Kief – This is the powdered material that you find collected at the bottom of your weed grinder. It is about as close to being 100% pure THC as you can get without any processing. Made of pure trichomes, it is basically hash before it is pressed. Usually Kief is smoked on a joint or mixed in with a bowl. Keep it sealed in an airtight container or it will dry out and seemingly vanish.
- Rosin – Also known as solid weed wax, this concentrate is made by pressing a bud of herb between two industrial iron plates. Basically, you are extracting the resin from the flowers using heat and pressure. It is fairly pliable and is usually wrapped around a joint and smoked.
- Hash Oil – Also known as butane hash oil (BHO), this is an extraction process that blasts pressurized butane through the cannabis flower. The butane causes the THC to drip out in a kind of oil. From this, the butane is evaporated, leaving behind a potent, sticky resin that can be smoked on a bowl or joint but most often is consumed in dab form using a specialized dab rig.
Most other concentrates on the market are variations of BHO with the exception of CO₂ Oil and Live Resin. These are most commonly being vaped vs smoking marijuana. The BHO concentrates are the following:
- Shatter– At almost 80% THC, shatter is concentrated THC, and among the most potent concentrates. It is made with a solvent extracting the THC from the flowers. It looks like colored glass and has a candy like texture and can be consumed on top of a bowl or as dabs.
- Sugar Wax – Made just like shatter but from bud with high terpene contents that retain water, the main difference is that it is shinier, stickier and crumbles easy.
- Budder – Made like BHO, it is somewhere between shatter and sugar wax. It is made from bud with less cannabinoids and more terpenes. Its wax-like consistency makes it easy to smoke using a dab rig.
- Crumble – Made like BHO except at a lower temperature, which allows the flavor to become concentrated. It turns into powder and is best scooped on top of a bowl.
- Live Resin – Fresh bud is harvested and the resin is extracted from the frozen flowers. This can only be done in a lab with proper equipment and should be left to professionals.
- CO₂ Oil – Carbon Dioxide is used to extract the resin, which is then vaporized in a pen with oil or taken orally when turned into CBD oil. Like Live Resin, it is made in a lab and should be left to the professionals.
- Distillate – Distillate is concentrated THC, up to 90% pure. Distillate has many uses, from eating to smoking.
Clearly there are a lot of variety when it comes to concentrates, there is also many different ways to vape cannabis. It’s easy to confuse these types for beginners because they all have close similarities.
You may be wondering how to use marijuana concentrates, our best advice is to visit your local dispensary and try the different types yourself. This way, you will know which ones you like the most and which concentrates just don’t do it for you. This is the best way to become an expert!